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Sidwell, Duff head Fulham summer exits

Steve Sidwell's goalscoring form could not prevent relegation for Fulham last season.

Steve Sidwell and Damien Duff are among the players to be released by Fulham this summer after they were relegated from the Premier League.

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The Cottagers endured a frustrating campaign as they conceded 85 goals in the top flight, and despite hiring Felix Magath in February, the side will play in the Championship next season after finishing 19th.

Sidwell scored 17 goals in 113 appearances for Fulham after joining from Aston Villa in January 2011, and finished as the club's top goalscorer last term with seven strikes.

Duff, meanwhile, spent five years at the Cottage and scored 22 times in 273 appearances for the West London side.

Midfielders Giorgos Karagounis and Mahamadou Diarra will also leave Craven Cottage when their contracts expire, as will John Arne Riise and centre-back John Heitinga.

Derek Boateng is departing after one season in London, while Matthew Briggs, Charles Banya, Alex Brister, Dino Islamovic, Ronny Minkwitz, Max Oberschmidt and Josh Pritchard will all move on from the club.

Club owner Shahid Khan is prepared to invest heavily over the summer to restore the club to the Premier League at the first attempt.

"It [relegation] is not what we wanted, but it is reality. What we have to do is build for the long haul," he said.

"We are going to do whatever it takes to put the best team on the field. I have talked to Felix [Magath], and what we want to do is what is in the best interests of the team."


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